Dressed for success and ready to compete, sixteen upperclassman from Gardena High School’s Global Leadership Academy (GGLA) and Banning High School’s International Trade Academy (ITA) were picked up from school in stretch limousines and whisked downtown to the 26th floor boardroom of the U.S. offices of Lloyds Banking Group, where they squared off in an “Apprentice”-style case competition between Team Disney and Team Apple. The prize was something that even The Donald would agree is invaluable: the skills and self-confidence to pitch a company today…and themselves tomorrow.
Channeling the energy already present in their cross-town football rivalry, Banning and Gardena students battled in the boardroom to prove their business prowess. Each team had been assigned to research either Disney, Apple, or McDonalds and identify the unique selling points (USP’s) for each company. The team with the strongest argument would be chosen as the winner. After being assigned a company, each team worked swiftly to put together a convincing presentation.
Under the careful eyes of Rob Vickery, North America Regional Director for Lloyds TSB International (GGLA Advisory Board member) and Akary Busto, Vice President of Corporate Account management (ITA Advisory Board member), students crafted their selling points to create a persuasive pitch. The aim was to let students take the lead to bolster confidence within the group. “I want to reach those kids at the back of the class that have potential but are too afraid to speak up” said Rob.
Although the competition was intense, the “apprentices” quickly developed a mutual respect for one other and even took the opportunity to do a little networking. By the time the limos pulled up to take them back to campus, everyone agreed that they were all winners. So did the judges, who declared both teams equally deserving of victory.
ITEP is extremely grateful to Rob Vickery, Akary Busto and Lloyds Banking Group for offering our students this phenomenal experience to push themselves to compete and to succeed. “This learning experience has been like no other. I enjoyed communicating with the Gardena students and learning about Lloyds Banking Group,” remarked ITA junior Diana. Thank you Lloyds in helping our students on their journeys!